So, MoMo, you're the one who took the member name that I wanted... that's my nickname.
Anyway, I have been a VW owner ever since I got my license. I owned a 95 Jetta GLX (for 7 days - nasty crash), a 95 GTI VR6 (had for 8 months - had to lemon law it), a 96 GTI VR6 (replacement for 95), and the latest was a 99 Jetta GLX. I traded in the Jetta two weeks ago for a 2001 S40, and I'll tell you why... Volkswagen quality has seriously declined and they are doing nothing about it.
The 95 GTI that I had was a complete nightmare, so much that I stopped driving it and left it at the dealership for three months until I got a replacement car. I was very soured and ready to give up on VW, but they made it right after three months of fighting and gave me a new car. The 96 was much better, but it started needing very expensive work around 60,000 miles, so I traded it in for the 99 Jetta. What a mistake!
In the 20 months that I owned the Jetta it visited the shop 23 times, sometimes for weeks at a time. In 20 months it needed three transmissions, two engine computers, an entire exaust system, some type of manifold, three passenger side window regulators, a mass air-flow sensor (that they wanted me to pay $400 for at 25,700 miles - 1,700 miles out of their crappy warranty), wheel bearings, a glovebox door, a cupholder, a gas flap actuator (that holds it shut), a trunk actuator (trunk wouldn't open for two weeks), two new cd changers, a new key, an alarm control module... I could go on because I'm sure I missed some things, but I think you get the point.
I entertained the idea of trading in the 99 for a 2001 Jetta GLX, thinking that maybe two years was long enough to work out the bugs, but gave up that idea when the glovebox handle came off in my hand during the test drive and the same squeeks and rattles present in the 99 Jetta were still present in the brand new 2001 with 20 miles on it, inexcusable in a $26,000 car. Not to mention I was told that I was going to have to wait two months for an automatic (manual is not an option in NYC) Jetta.
The S40 that I got is beautiful. White/Taupe leather, Sport Pkg, pwr seat, sunroof, wood effect interior trim, cold weather package. The car is way more comfotable than the Jetta, the 5 speed auto transmission is soooooooo much better than the Jetta's 4 speed piece of crap, and I disagree with your comment on the car's interior - the Volvo is put together much better than the Jetta, which rattled and squeeked from day one.
So sure, I sacrificed a little performance (handling only- the engine and transmission kick butt). Trust me my friend, it was well worth it. I no longer worry about what kind of crappy rental car I am going to have to drive for weeks at a time while VW waits on backordered parts. I no longer have to worry about getting stranded in the middle of an intersection in mid-town Manhattan, or on the Cross Bronx Expressway at 1:00am, nor do I have to drive the car home at 20 MPH in "Limp mode" as VW calls it, or wait hours for VW's roadside assistance tow truck. I no longer have to book service appointments three weeks in advance, and no longer have to fight for non-warranty repairs to be covered.
I hope you have better luck with your Jetta than I did with mine. It is a nice car, when mine was working (very very rarely) I loved it, but dealing with problem after problem was too draining and time consuming, especially with a network of idiot dealerships and a customer service staff that is grossly unhelpful. I get treated like royalty at the Volvo dealership, but I won't need to go there often... just for maintenance and my free car wash every now and then.
I couldn't be happier with this car so far, those middle-aged and elderly women are on to something here...